International visitors spent a record-breaking $180.7 billion on U.S. travel and tourism-related goods and services in 2013, up more than 9 percent from 2012, according to a 2014 Economic Impact report for the U.S., which was released today by the World Travel & Tourism Council (WTTC). According to David Scowsill, WTTC president and CEO, the United States needs to ramp up efforts to enable international visitors to more easily gain visas for short-term business and leisure travel. As the strongest service export for the United States, travel and tourism contributes more than 28 percent of all U.S. service exports and nearly 8 percent of total U.S. exports, the WTTC reported. Travel and tourism’s direct contribution to the U.S. economy grew by 2.6 percent last year and should increase an additional 3.5 percent this year. To retain its competitive position, it’s important for the U.S. to adopt more policies. Read more over at Travel Agent Central.